This is the time of year when we over-indulge on pretty much, a daily basis...eating way too much or simply eating all the wrong foods. Virasana or Hero's Pose may well be the perfect medicine for your digestive system at this time of the year. It’s fabulous for tonifying the digestive meridian in the body.
It also helps loosen your ankles, knees and hips. An added bonus.
Depending on the flexibility of your knees, hips and ankles you may find it difficult to sit with your buttocks resting between your feet. So, there are couple of modifications with blankets you might like to try for extra comfortability.
If your knees are sore then place one or more folded/rolled blankets behind your knees.
You can also grab your calf muscles and roll them out and away from your thighs – this should create more space and usually works well.
If your hips and buttocks are tight or your bottom a little bony, sit on one or two folded blankets. This will also help remove any stress from your knees.
The key is to feel comfortable so you’re able to sit and breath into this yoga posture for around 5 minutes.
Tired Legs or Aching Back From Too Much Shopping:
Why not try legs up the wall for 15 minutes. This yoga pose is great for fluid retention in your legs. And, if legs up the wall sounds way too tricky for you why not try a gentler version with legs resting on a chair. Still has the same wonderful effect.
Honestly, this has got to be one easiest ways to deeply rest your body. Not too mention the health benefits for your adrenals, circulation, organs, heart, aching legs and nervous system. So much better for you than having another cup of coffee and soldiering on.
Trust me, you’ve got to try this restorative yoga pose and experience it for yourself. After 5 minutes of chillaxing with your “legs up the wall”, you’ll feel so much better. All you need is a floor and a wall. Blankets and cushions are handy optional extras.
Before you start:
Grab a few cushions, blankets or a bolster just in case you decide you need a few under your buttocks to feel extra comfortable and supported.
Of course you don’t need any props at all, just the floor and wall is perfectly fine.
I personally prefer having a bolster under my bum as it gives a nice gentle stretch to my sacrum and lower back. I also love using my yoga eye pillow as it relaxes my eye muscles and helps deepen the relaxation experience. A light blanket is also handy as your body tends to cool down when you relax.
Getting into legs up the wall:
1: Sit next to wall with your knees bent and your left shoulder and left hip against the wall.
2: Swing around to bring your bottom up close to the wall supporting yourself on your elbows and forearms. If you're using a bolster have that against the wall first and then swing around and up onto it.
3: Slowly move your legs straight up the wall. Keep them relaxed. Come away from the wall if your hamstrings are tight or tailbone and buttocks are lifting off the floor. Remember being extra comfortable is important.
4: Use a folded blanket under your head if necessary. Make sure your chin is slightly lower than your forehead. Your neck must feel comfortable, without any tightness or pinching at the nape. If blood flow to the head is obstructed, the brain cannot relax. A towel rolled and placed under your neck can also be helpful. Take your time and do what feels right for you today.
5: Place your arms out by your side with your palms turned up. This opens up the area under your arm pits and gives space to your chest and heart area.
6: Breath slowly and deeply. Enjoy the release of tension from your legs, your spine being able to relax and chest area more open.
7: To finish simply bring your knees to your chest and very, very gently roll out to your right side. Wait for a few minutes before you get up. This is very important – gives your blood pressure time to adjust.
Yogic Detox Tea:
Help your body out a little by detoxing gently each day with spiced hot water.
1/4 tsp coriander seeds, 1/4 tsp of cummin seeds and 1/4tsp of fennel seeds. Mix with 1.5 litres of hot water. Sip throughout the day.
Yogic Aura Cleansing Bath:
Cleanses negativity from your aura and removes chemicals from your physical body. Soak for 20 minutes and repeat each day for 7 days. If you start to feel dizzy or weird leave bath immediately as you have successfully loosened and removed enough negativity for the day.
I personally have not done this one for 7 days but a few of my friends have and all rave about how awesome it is.
- 1 lb Baking soda
- 1 cup Sea salt
If all else fails...breathe:
It seems obvious but sometimes, when we're at our most stressed it's the hardest thing to do. But breathing - not just breathing, but breathing properly, deeply - helps us to relax, unwind and take stock. It's how birthing mothers get through their hardest of labouring moments; it's how yogis stretch into their deepest of poses; it's how people stay sane when someone shouts in their face. Use your breath mindfully and the rest will follow.
Remember to enjoy the festivities. It doesn't all have to be perfect. Spend it doing the things you love doing, with the people you love doing it with. Time is precious, it's important to enjoy it!